The New People’s Army (NPA) released the six militiamen they abducted in Sibagat, Agusan del Sur around 6 p.m. Thursday.
The six released Cafgu Active Auxiliaries (CAA) were identified as Jurian B Gaviola, Marson C Iligan, Bienvinido A Lamion, Eddie J Tindoy, Sanny G Malobay and Hermito M Iligan.
They were turned-over to the Philippine Army’s 401st Infantry Brigade in Purok 12-A, Poblacion, Sibagat.
NPA abducted the militiamen in various operations last year.
Col. Ezra Balagtey, the spokesperson of the Eastern Mindanao Command (EastMinCom), claimed the release was due to the pressure of a “relentless military operations to rescue the troopers.”
Major Gen. Felimon Santos Jr., the EastMinCom chief, said his units are continuously conducting military operations to rescue the troopers who are being used by the NPAs as human shields and propaganda subjects.
He said the NPA is using the abduction as a propaganda tool, which he called as ‘kidnap for presscon’, to stop security operations that will allow them to continue conducting their recruitment, carry out atrocities against communities and to project a force to recon with.
“We are assuring our communities that this propaganda … will not affect our effort and commitment to protect our communities and their right to live peacefully,” Santos said.
He said the released CAAs will be given time to talk with their immediate families, after which, they will undergo normal processing such as medical check-up and debriefing.
The NPA has not issued statement on the release.
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